TUESDAY SEPTEMBER 13, 2005 – SATURDAY OCTOBER 29, 2005
Can Buildings Curate is curated and designed by Shumon Basar, Joshua Bolchover, and Parag Sharma of the London-based practice Newbetter (www.newbetter.co.uk /email@example.com).
The modern gallery remains a contentious, inspirational, and problematic cultural battleground. It’s under this backdrop where a fascinating love/hate triangle between artists, architects, and curators interact. Sometimes egos compete. Occasionally envy is engendered. And every so often love prevails as new and collaborative relationships are born.
Marcel Duchamp, Friedrich Kiesler, Alexander Dorner, Yves Klein, and Arman had evoked a historical trajectory of ideological provocations and provocateurs. Early-twentieth-century visionaries pushed the boundaries between art and its display. The legacy extended throughout the 1960s and 70s where the context became the content, and ‘institutional critique’ was at the fore. Michael Asher’s installations exemplify this turning point. The collected participants from Can Buildings Curate continue to raise questions about art’s production, presentation, and consumption through the medium of the modern gallery.
London-based artist Neal Rock produces a new large-scale work that responds to Storefront’s façade project by Vito Acconci and Steven Holl (1993), taking over neglected areas inside and outside of the gallery with his silicon splatter-sculptures. Drabble + Sachs, a Swiss-based curator/artist duo, continue their research into the discourse of art’s economy by meeting with architect Isa Stürm, treating the relation between art, architecture, and curation as a live performance-debate. Dee Ferris, a London-based painter, draws connections between her studio and the space of the exhibition through an instructional work that grows as the piece travels. New York painter Yuh-Shioh Wong completes it in-situ at Storefront. The Lausanne-based architectural office, Décosterd + Rahm, present their latest built work, the Lucy Mackintosh Gallery: a building that epitomizes their fascination with the physiological effects of the ‘invisible’ dimensions of space, distorting temperature and humidity.
A collection of ‘Indicative Projects’, built and unbuilt, stir up further conversations. Lina Bo Bardi, OMA/Rem Koolhaas, Diller+Scofidio, SANAA (Sejima/ Nishizawa), RßSie, AS-IF, Hirsch/Müller, and Zaha Hadid represent inventive architectural approaches, all collaborating closely with artists, curators, or art institutions. Davide Bertocchi and Goshka Macuga represent a generation of artists fuelled by twentieth-century Utopian architectures and visionary display makers. Cai Guo-Qiang escapes the curatorial limits of the gallery altogether and forges new life in half-forgotten structures. Curators Barbara Vanderlinden (Roomade, Brussels) and the late Igor Zabel (Moderna Galeria, Ljublana) and Josef Dabernig reflect on the logic of given architectural spaces in their curatorial practices.
The exhibition design engages the unique space of Storefront and is dedicated to the memory of the ‘white cube’ gone wrong. For the show, it dissolves into discernable display fragments, such as walls, floors and plinths. Fabricated from a palette of lightweight, secondary construction items culled from modern galleries and minimalist art, the ‘miscreant cube’ tampers with Storefront by colonizing and amplifying its idiosyncrasies.